Distinguishing Conservatism from the GOP

by Sal on December 2, 2008

in Politics

Erick Erickson of RedState has a post today on how the Conservative movement became overly-entwined with GOP party politics, and became a component of the Republican Party, not a driving force.  As Rush has consistently stated for several years now, Bush is nor has he ever been a movement Conservative.  Conservatives, because they had a leader who did espouse conservative ideas and followed eight years of Bill Clinton, rallied around him and only mildly protested as he expanded the size of government with No Child Left Behind, the Prescription Drug Benefit for Medicare, and huge increases in the federal budget.  Only into his second term, with the Harriet Meyers appointment and the Immigration debate did Conservatives rally as a movement external to the Party.  When that happened, Conservatism won the day.

Erickson is right.  We need to rally around Conservative principles and expunge the deadwood — those who have become part of the big-government problem and have become intrenched in the Washington bureaurocracy.  We need to rally around those new, young leaders outside of Washington such as Sarah Palin and Bobbly Jindal, and those inside Washington who are more Conservative than they are Republican, such as Sen. Jim DeMint and the representatives who are members of the Republican Study Committee.  The Conservative movement has to become a grassroots movement and engage in ideas and grassroots activism to push its ideas (both traditional activism and contemporary digital activism).  In short, the GOP must become the

That is not to say we must purge everyone from the party who disagrees on a single issue or on a few issues.  The political reality is that ideological purity from a candidate is not always possible, and not everyone has the capacity to convince and persuade that a Ronald Reagan had.  It does mean, however, that we need to pressure our elected leaders to push the Conservative agenda through, and use the GOP as the vehicle for the grassroots or “rightroots” to get our agenda through and begin to reduce the size of government, promote a culture of life, lower taxes, empower individuals, and propose new ideas for the reform of Education, Health Care, and other traditionally-Democrat issues that takes government out and puts American entrepreneuralism in.  Ideas, loyal opposition, organization, and grassroots activism are the formula for electoral success in the years to come.  We have to be sure that we just don’t drink the GOP kool-aid, but fight to have the GOP reflect our values and beliefs.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Mike December 2, 2008 at 10:07 am

Drinking the GOP Kool Aid shouldn’t be a problem. This is both a good thing and a bad thing, but the GOP doesn’t make Kool Aid.

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